Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from rkarp. Show rkarp's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    Reiss thinks Jones is the surprise cut due to injury (kidney)

     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from ghostofjri37. Show ghostofjri37's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    In response to rkarp's comment:

    Reiss thinks Jones is the surprise cut due to injury (kidney)



    Didn't he miss the last 3 or 4 games in Buffalo with that issue?

     

     

     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from pcmIV. Show pcmIV's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    In response to russgriswold's comment:

    New England was outstanding in creating turnovers with 20 interceptions and 21 fumble recoveries, which is more important than pass defense. Imagine giving Tom Brady 41 extra series in a season.



    The second sentence does not follow from the first.  Turnovers are good because they often cause a change of momentum and can mean good field position.  They usually aren't any more effective at getting the ball back quickly to the offense than a quick stop.

     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from ATJ. Show ATJ's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    In response to pcmIV's comment:

    In response to russgriswold's comment:

     

    New England was outstanding in creating turnovers with 20 interceptions and 21 fumble recoveries, which is more important than pass defense. Imagine giving Tom Brady 41 extra series in a season.

     



    The second sentence does not follow from the first.  Turnovers are good because they often cause a change of momentum and can mean good field position.  They usually aren't any more effective at getting the ball back quickly to the offense than a quick stop.



    Yeah, I was thinking along those lines myself.  Only difference I can see is field position, depending on where the t/o occurs.

     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from BostonSportsFan111. Show BostonSportsFan111's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    In response to ghostofjri37's comment:

    In response to rkarp's comment:

     

    Reiss thinks Jones is the surprise cut due to injury (kidney)

     



    Didn't he miss the last 3 or 4 games in Buffalo with that issue?

     

     

     



    Was that due to this??

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dE7sQVQdgj8

     

     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from BabeParilli. Show BabeParilli's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    In response to russgriswold's comment:

     

     

    "New England was outstanding in creating turnovers with 20 interceptions and 21 fumble recoveries, which is more important than pass defense."

    Said this here for 3 years.^^^

     



    Too bad that wasn't the case in the playoffs, right dumbkoff?

    Oh, that's right, you only criticize Brady for any post-season fall off.

     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from CatfishHunter. Show CatfishHunter's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    In the last 3 postseason losses the Pats have generated ZERO turnovers.

    Live by the turnover, die by the turnover.

    Give me a sound, fundamentally strong defense over an opportunistic defense every time.

     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from pcmIV. Show pcmIV's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    In response to russgriswold's comment:

    In response to ATJ's comment:

     

    In response to pcmIV's comment:

     

     

    In response to russgriswold's comment:

     

     

     

     

    New England was outstanding in creating turnovers with 20 interceptions and 21 fumble recoveries, which is more important than pass defense. Imagine giving Tom Brady 41 extra series in a season.

     

     

     



    The second sentence does not follow from the first.  Turnovers are good because they often cause a change of momentum and can mean good field position.  They usually aren't any more effective at getting the ball back quickly to the offense than a quick stop.

     

     

     

     



    Yeah, I was thinking along those lines myself.  Only difference I can see is field position, depending on where the t/o occurs.

     

     

     




    Obviously. 

     

    That doesn't change the fact NE is very good at creating turnovers on D.  I've heard every excuse in the book that we only get INTs vs bad QBs or with huge leads, which is completely false.  BB teaches the turnover thing, they emphasize it, they always have. Many teams do, if not all, but the results are nowhere near what BB's Ds have done so consistently, especially in recent years. 

    I'll give you an example  of a game where NE's D was subpar, but a turnover and like 6 sacks in the game kept them in the game for them to win it, but our offense sucked so bad in the second half.

    2011 @ Pitt

    Guyton picked Big Rapist before half. He set us up at like the 2 yard line and Branch scored a TD. It completely changed the momentum, even if NE's gameplan was to keep guys off the line on Wallace and not let any big plays come from him. That allowed Big Rape to dink and dunk and move the sticks to eat clock.   Now, we are a long, long way from Gary Guyton and James Ihedigbo, and names like that, running around out there. We'll have Adrian Wilson, Talib, Dennard, McCourty, playing as a unit, which is only going to help. 

    The difference was, we had a chance to win that game in the 4th qtr on offense, with the D having a good second half. That was also on the heels of losing Bodden for the season and now career, so they were really undermanned.  So, that was a close game as dominated as NE was in the first half, but that Guyton INT, completely flipped the game's momentum. So, that is proof the yards allowed, because you're doing it to offset big plays, is somewhat meaningless in the big picture.  I won't mention SB 46, no turnovers for us, because it will just start another flame war, but that had LITTLE to do with why we lost that game.  It all comes back to our offense needing to execute to ice games, obviously. You can't expect a guaranteed minium of 2 turnovers every game. That's irrational thinking.   I am just glad they get as many as they do so consistently.

    A team like Pitt was awful at it last year and they missed the playoffs again, so how great is that D and how bad is ours?   Hmm.

    Kirwan is correct in saying yards allowed in the air is pretty much the last stat that matters, especially if you're 9th in the league in total defense and lead the conference every year in turnovers, generating more times Brady and the offense can mount a drive for your team.

    It's amazing to me how disrespected our defense is. It's all over-dramatized and I'll stop there as to why that is the case. 



    First of all we were 9th in scoring defense not total defense.  In total defense we were 25th mostly because of the passing D number.  Yards do matter.  Not as much as points obviously, but they still matter.  In particular they matter when you aren't able to force turnovers.  In the last 3 postseason losses the defense hasn't forced a single turnover.  Some of that is bad luck and some of it is that playoff teams probably do a better job of taking care of the ball.  When you aren't able to force turnovers you still need to be able to get stops.  More yards equals more time off the clock (which means less time for your offense) and if not more points allowed at least bad field position for your offense.

    And again I will take issue with your claim "especially if you're 9th in the league in total defense and lead the conference every year in turnovers, generating more times Brady and the offense can mount a drive for your team."  My disagreement with that logic was the reason for my previous post.  There are a lot of variables that go into the number of possessions a team gets, but it is worth pointing out that last season the Patriots ranked middle of the pack in offensive possessions per football outsiders.

    I tend to be more bullish on the defense than a large contingent of posters on this board, but I don't think it's right to claim that a metric that the defense ranks poorly on is completely irrelevant.

     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from pcmIV. Show pcmIV's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    In response to russgriswold's comment:

    What's wrong with the kidney?



    He has some sort of chronic kidney condition.  I remember looking this up in a previous thread a long time ago.  It is rumored to be the reason he has missed time in the past although it is in theory manageable.

     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from pcmIV. Show pcmIV's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    Well I guess it wasn't manageable enough given that he just got cut.

     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from CaptainZdeno33. Show CaptainZdeno33's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    My response to their high turnover numbers is always the same. How many turnovers have they forced in the postseason since 2009? If you attack Brady's postseason play how can you stand behind the defense's inabiliby to force a turnover when it actually matters?

     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from freediro. Show freediro's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    I want to know how many points we actually scored off those turnovers, otherwise that is a meaningless stat if we just punt it away.

     
     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from JohnHannahrulz. Show JohnHannahrulz's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    Turnovers are of enormous importance in the current era. Maybe only second to scoring defense/points allowed. So many pass happy offenses and favorable offensive rules. I am more concerned about the Pats TO differential than I am yardage (easily and going away). Agree Adrain Wilson could be an intimidating force that could be used a variety of ways. On paper the nickel and dime packages should be better. I am curious to see what Collins can do defensively and how much of force Jones can be now that he's bulked up.

     
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    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    Just happy to be talking football , again Rusty.

     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from 42AND46. Show 42AND46's posts

    Re: Kirwan's Preseason Analysis

    In response to russgriswold's comment:

     

    I always liked his rational, objective analysis.

    http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/story/22650352/2013-nfl-training-camp-preview-new-england-patriots

    Two quotes stand out:

     

    "New England was outstanding in creating turnovers with 20 interceptions and 21 fumble recoveries, which is more important than pass defense."

    Said this here for 3 years.^^^

    "Former Patriot Dan Koppen said to me, 'You won't hear a word out of Tom or any excuses. He will meet the challenge'..."

     


    The Patriots have dominated the AFC East for so many years it's hard to remember when any of the other teams really challenged them for the division crown. There is an undercurrent that they are closer to the pack now with the departures from the roster and some of the additions to their opponents, especially down in Miami. I'm not buying it as long as Tom Brady is under center. Brady will need his greatest year as a pro to overcome some of the issues surrounding the club, but as former Patriot Dan Koppen said to me, "You won't hear a word out of Tom or any excuses. He will meet the challenge."

     

    Key changes

    The addition of Tim Tebow isn't a reason to believe the Patriots are developing a secret package that would put Tom Brady on the sideline. A few years ago I asked owner Robert Kraft if the club had any interest in the Wildcat offense.

    2013 NFL TRAINING CAMPTeam previews, dates, locations

    "We have no interest in anything that doesn't have Tom Brady on the field running the offense," Kraft responded.

    The Patriots have assembled a solid group of running backs and there could be more emphasis on the ground attack. Over the past two seasons the Patriots have averaged 654 pass plays and they could be considering cutting that back to the 550 range. That equates to six less pass plays a game and I could see the run game getting the extra work. That would make sense, especially with the significant changes to the receiver position. But in the end Tom Brady will still be leading one of the top scoring offenses in the NFL.

    On defense the Patriots were ranked 9th overall but 29th against the pass. New England was outstanding in creating turnovers with 20 interceptions and 21 fumble recoveries, which is more important than pass defense. Imagine giving Tom Brady 41 extra series in a season. As for shoring up the pass defense, it starts up front with a better pass rush and hopefully the linebackers play a bigger role in coverage and pressure.

    Roster additions: Two key players on defense have to step up for the Pats: safety Adrian Wilson and defensive tackle Tommy Kelly. Wilson is thought of as a box safety better against the run than the pass and time will tell how he plays in space against teams trying to match up their vertical threat tight ends against him. Kelly has talent but has been labeled an underachiever at times. He should provide some inside push with Vince Wilfork to help collapse the pocket.

    On offense the Patriots have overhauled the receiver position and expect big things from oft-injured Danny Amendola, rookie WR Aaron Dobson and veteran castoffs Michael Jenkins and Donald Jones. Amendola replaces Wes Welker but has only been active in 42 of his 64 games and has 196 receptions and 7 touchdowns in his career. Not one of these four wide receivers has ever been in a real game with Tom Brady or experienced Brady's no-huddle attack.

    Roster departures: Gone are Wes Welker, Brandon Lloyd, Aaron Hernandez, Donte' Stallworth, Deion Branch and Danny Woodhead. Last year as a group they caught 301 passes and 19 touchdowns. Tom Brady completed 401 passes last year and 75 percent of those receptions are not on the roster as well as 56% of the touchdowns. This group of missing receivers also moved the chains for a first down 179 times or 11 a game.

    Staff changes: The Patriots return all key components to the staff with the offensive, defensive and special team coordinators still in Foxboro.

    Position battles

    Right cornerback: Second-year player Alfonzo Dennard is penciled in as the starter but veteran Kyle Arrington and rookie Logan Ryan will press to take the job. The top loser should be the nickel back.

    Linebacker: The Patriots have invested heavily at linebacker over the past few years with Jerod Mayo and Dont'a Hightower as former first-round picks and Brandon Spikes a second-round selection. Keep an eye on this year's Round 2 linebacker, Jamie Collins, trying to fight his way on to the field.

    Running back: This will be interesting to watch as Stevan Ridley and Shane Vereen should compete for most of the playing time, but the addition of LeGarrette Blount and Leon Washington make the situation very competitive.

    New schemes

    The Patriots are listed as a 4-3 defense, which they played last year as their base defense but they have a long history of being a 3-4. With the personnel on this roster right now Coach Bill Belichick could easily return to a 3-4 package. On the offensive side of the ball until the health status of tight end Rob Gronkowski is known they may have to be creative with their personnel groupings. Jake Ballard could get significant time at tight end or they could use more of a hybrid two-back system.

    Bubble watch

    Former 2010 second-round pick OLB/DE Jermaine Cunningham has fallen down the depth chart and is questionable to make the roster. Tim Tebow is no lock to make the team, especially with a non-guaranteed contract and the Patriots' recent history of keeping only two quarterbacks.

    Unheard-of-guy to watch

    Three guys that could play bigger roles this year include WR Donald Jones picked up from the Bills, WR/DB Julian Edelman, and center Ryan Wendell. Jones has as good a chance as any receiver to make an impression on Tom Brady. Edelman could see some of Woodhead's opportunities and might have more of Welker's skill sets than anyone on the roster. Wendell started all 16 games last year and no one knows the guy. Now with Hernandez gone and Gronkowski's health in question, the Patriots either trade or pick up tight end help or expect a lot more from Jake Ballard or Michael Hoomanawanui.

    Biggest concerns

    Inexperience at the receiver positions and the health of Gronkowski lead the list of concerns. Last year Tom Brady threw 13 touchdown passes to one interception in his six division games. Is that production still going to be there this season? How much emotional damage will the issues surrounding Hernandez inflict? What about the distractions they might cause?

    Something to prove

    Amendola has big shoes to fill replacing Welker, who year-in and year-out caught 100 balls. Michael Jenkins replaces Brandon Lloyd. Jenkins' best season as a pro was 53 receptions for the Falcons in 2007. Lloyd had 74 catches last year. Tim Tebow really has to open up to the idea of playing another position if he wants to stick with the Patriots. He's not better than backup QB Ryan Mallet and to make this team he may have to become a utility player.

    About Pat Kirwan

    author photoPat Kirwan has been around the league since 1972, serving in a variety of roles. He was a scout for the Cardinals and Buccaneers, a coach for the Jets as well as the team's Director of Player Administration where he negotiated contracts and managed the team's salary cap. He is the author of Take Your Eye Off the Ball: How to Watch Football by Knowing Where to Look, and the host of Sirius NFL Radio's Moving the

     




     

    "New England was outstanding in creating turnovers with 20 interceptions and 21 fumble recoveries, which is more important than pass defense."

     

    worked wonders in SB 46

     btw isn't that cliff klavin?

     
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